Theatre shows to catch in the Klang Valley in early 2022


'Night, Mother', which plays at PJPac starting Jan 6, features Anitha Hamid (left) and Sukania Venugopal. Photo: PH7 Production Management

It looks like the performing arts and theatre scene in the Klang Valley will be continuing a strong recovery run well into the first few months of 2022.

With audiences ready to head back to the theatre venues, it's also no surprise there is a fair amount of diversity of the cards. Here are some shows that have caught our eye:

‘Night, Mother
Venue: Petaling Jaya Performing Arts Centre (PJPac)
Date: Jan 6-16

Theatre veteran Pat Gui of PH7 Production Management makes her directorial debut with this 1982 play by American playwright Marsha Norman.

Gui has been in the theatre industry for 30 years, with her expertise in stage production and management. But she is coming into the spotlight in style, with help of actors Sukania Venugopal and Anitha Ab Hamid, who star in 'Night, Mother.

The play is set in the kitchen-cum-living room of an isolated house shared by Jessie (Anitha) and her elderly mother Thelma (Sukania). Jessie, an unemployed epileptic with a failed marriage and a deeply troubled son, has meticulously organised the house and made other detailed preparations for the future while explaining the changes to Thelma, who is unaware of anything unusual.

Finally, Jessie asks about the location of her late father's pistol. Thelma informs her, unaware why Jessie needs it in the first place. Thelma begins to question Jessie's strange behaviour only after she retrieves the pistol.

More info here.

Music director Ian Chow and his KLPac team will be giving torch songs a unique twist with the upcoming 'Men On Women: Torch Songs Reinterpreted' show next month. Photo: KLPacMusic director Ian Chow and his KLPac team will be giving torch songs a unique twist with the upcoming 'Men On Women: Torch Songs Reinterpreted' show next month. Photo: KLPac

Men On Women: Torch Songs Reinterpreted
Venue: KLPac
Date: Jan 13-16

Who doesn’t love a good torch song? Call them epic, iconic, what have you but these songs by some of the greatest singers of our time are sure to tug at your heartstrings.

Think music by divas like Beyonce, Rihanna, Adele and Whitney Houston with local darlings Jaclyn Victor and Aina Abdul as well as a few tunes from all-time popular musicals like Les Miserables and Cabaret all in one show.

Directed by Ian Chow, Mark Beau de Silva, and Zhafir Muzani, Men On Women: Torch Anthems Reinterpreted features an interesting twist with an all-male line up.

Singers Dai, Dennis Lee and Joel Wong will be taking the microphone, while Mak Chi Hoe is the music director and pianist.

More info here.

Harapan Di Hadapan
Venue: Damansara Performing Arts Centre (DPAC), Petaling Jaya
Date: Jan 7-9, Jan 14-16

In August, the Damansara Performing Arts Centre (DPAC) launched the "Harapan Di Hadapan" (Hope Is Ahead) initiative, which provides theatre makers with a free venue and technical support.

DPAC has selected seven works to showcase following a five-month evaluation process. These works will incorporate elements of drama, theatre, diabolo, and dance. Tristen Loo, Tarrant Kwok, Kylie Lim, Milol Tahar, Ridhwan Saidi, Lee Yee Han, and Ryn Mah are among the artists involved, as are other collaborative actors and playwrights.

From a dance piece about surviving a pandemic to an experimental theatre piece about two animals complaining to humans about their deceased parents, a performative essay/non-fiction theatre piece, and a dark and humorous story about three friends trapped together during a water cut, Harapan Di Hadapan, which is ticketed, promises something new and different.

More info here.

Dead Water
Venue: KLPac
Date: Jan 15 and 16

This one is for the experimental theatre fan. Have you ever considered whether it is worthwhile to live in this world? With all of life's challenges and difficulties, living can become an unpleasant state of being.

Dead Water by Hermana Collective tackles this harrowing subject. This pre-recorded presentation is the result of a collaborative effort involving dancers, theatre artists, musicians, and videographers.

Dead Water, filmed outdoors at the lawn of KLPac, features Chloe Tan, Ho Lee Ching, Tung Jit Yang, while Rezza Coebar Abel and Ian Francis Khoo (of experimental arts/music outfit Francoe) provide the ambient soundscapes. This production will also be streamed via CloudTheatre.

More info here.

 Raziman (left) will be choreographing and performing a piece, while Suhaili (right) will be choreographing a work titled 'To MusimMonstah' at the 'Creature Trilogy' contemporary dance showcase at DPAC late next month. Photo: FilepicRaziman (left) will be choreographing and performing a piece, while Suhaili (right) will be choreographing a work titled 'To MusimMonstah' at the 'Creature Trilogy' contemporary dance showcase at DPAC late next month. Photo: Filepic

Creature Trilogy
Venue: DPAC
Date: Jan 21-23

Here is major treat for contemporary dance fans. Creature Trilogy sees the return of three renowned choreographers and dancers, Raziman Sarbini, Pexstret Liu Yong Sean, and Suhaili Micheline from the United States, South Korea, and Australia respectively.

Each of them have made names for themselves in their respective adopted homelands. Taking lessons learned abroad, they now hope to combine their unique understanding of biomechanics to derive new pieces of work.

Creature Trilogy will first feature the solo works by the choreographers, which is then followed by a collaborative piece from all three of them. This triple bill will see an amalgamation of their differences in biomechanics, experience, country, and style that is sure to exceed audience’s expectations.

More info here.

Joe Hasham, (KLPac) co-founder and artistic director, will direct a Mandarin version of A Streetcar Named Desire in March. Photo: KLPacJoe Hasham, (KLPac) co-founder and artistic director, will direct a Mandarin version of A Streetcar Named Desire in March. Photo: KLPac

A Streetcar Named Desire
Venue: KLPac
Date: March 19-27

Joe Hasham, co-founder and artistic director of KLPac, returns to Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire. This time, he will challenging himself further by directing a Mandarin adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play.

Ruby Faye, John Tan, Aki, Tan Li Yang, Amelia Chen, Freddy Tan, Dylan Yeo, Yu Huan, Dennis Lee, Yen Yi, Hendrix Heng, and Joven Leong are in the production's line-up.

A Streetcar Named Desire follows Blanche DuBois as she abandons her privileged upbringing and moves into a run-down New Orleans apartment with her younger sister. When Blanche is pushed over the edge by her brutal brother-in-law Stanley Kowalski, trouble ensues. With Hasham having staged the play twice, we can be confident that A Streetcar Named Desire is in capable hands. In 2014, Hasham adapted it into a dance drama.

More info: klpac.org.

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Performing arts , theatre , Klang Valley , PJPac , KLPac , DPac

   

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